Jury hears words of witness who was killed before he could testify

Quintae Hudson accused of arranging murder on Easter Sunday 2016

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The jury hearing the murder trial of Quintae Hudson, a 25-year-old man accused of arranging the murder of a witness from behind bars, was read the words Wednesday of the man who was killed before he could testify.

Hudson is charged with the murder of 62-year-old Michael Wright, who was shot and killed on Easter Sunday 2016 at the Hollybrook Apartments on Kings Street.

Prosecutors said Hudson made multiple calls from jail after his deposition in a different case in which he was accused of throwing a concrete block through a windshield of a car with a couple and child inside. Hudson faced 15 to 30 years if convicted of that crime.

Wright was a security guard at the apartment complex where the brick-throwing incident occurred, and was listed as a witness for the prosecution. In Wright's deposition, he said, "He through the brick into the window," referring to Quintae Hudson, then ran away.

On Wednesday, two witnesses whose names News4Jax is not using for their safety testified said that Hudson told them, "Wright's testimony would hurt him."

During the middle of the trial Wednesday, the State Attorney’s Office asked that the media be restricted from revealing certain information, requesting closed court. Hudson also waived his Sixth Amendment right for the identity of witnesses to be protected in closed court.

Beginning Thursday, court will be closed to the public, but open to the media for the protection of five witnesses. 

According to court documents, Hudson can be heard on jail recordings asking that Wright be "handled" and "taken care of." It is expected those recording will be played for the jury when the trial resumes Thursday.

Police have not charged anyone as the triggerman who shot Wright, but prosecutors believe that the jail recordings of Hudson gives them enough evidence to convict Hudson of murder.

It is not known if Hudson will take the stand in his own defense.

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